I am reviewing the Black Lion Audio Signature Model Modded Digidesign 002 recording interface. I have owned mine for about 4 months and have fallen in love with the tone that this interface is able to achieve. In my opinion it is dark and deep sounding yet retains plenty of clarity and richness to where I am able to get a cool vintage texture to my recordings off the bat. I would compare it tonally to a Chess Records type of sound.
The mic pre's are very nice sounding with a creamy shimmer of an overtone to them. In my opinion, the line inputs also have the same textural quality. This unit is ideal for a mobile recording unit to where you get signal off of a clubs P.A. board.
In my experience, the AD converters are very transparent and as a result, are able to perfectly reproduce the color and texture of the preamp that is going into the channel. Also, the amount of gain that the pre's have is quite impressive. I've successfully had enough gain to power a 1940's RCA ribbon mic. Those old ribbon mics are notorious for being very gain hungry.
While mixing in the box on the modded 002, the amount of width of the stereo mixing space is so much wider than with a stock 002. Because of this, I have been able to physically recreate the mix, that up until this point, I could only hear in my head.
I have yet to come across ANY interface under $2000 dollars that can compete with it, much less BEAT it.